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Russians and Ukrainians Turn Sour on Each Other – Poll

Attitudes have worsened in less than half a year. Serg Glovny / Zuma / TASS

Russian and Ukrainian attitudes toward each other have worsened in less than half a year, a joint study by the independent Levada Center pollster and the Kiev International Institute of Sociology (KIIS) said Thursday.

The latest survey showed 42% of Russians having a “good” or “very good” opinion of Ukraine; while 49% of Ukrainians had a “good” or “very good” opinion of Russia, a double-digit drop from the last poll, conducted in September 2019.

The last study had shown that 56% of Russian respondents had positive opinions of Ukraine, while 54% of Ukrainian respondents had positive opinions of Russia. Sociologists said at the time that attitudes had been gradually warming since the 2014 conflict between the government and pro-Russian rebels in eastern Ukraine that froze relations.

Negative attitudes among Russians and Ukrainians toward each others’ countries have also gone up, according to Levada and KIIS. 

The share of Russian respondents who viewed Ukraine negatively rose from 31% in September to 47% in the latest poll. The share of Ukrainian respondents who viewed Russia negatively increased from 34% in September to 39%.

Levada conducted the survey among 1,603 Russians from Jan. 23-29. In Ukraine, KIIS polled 2,043 people including in government-held territories in conflict-torn eastern Ukraine from Dec. 1-12.

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